MedEdits | Medical School Admissions Consulting

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Residency: Are You Competitive?

By Jessica Freedman, MD,

When choosing your specialty, it is essential to determine your competitiveness for that specialty. How do you start making this evaluation? I suggest applicants first review the NRMPs Charting Outcomes in the Match which is published annually. This report outlines average USMLE scores, number of research experiences, volunteer experiences, etc. for US allopathic medical school graduates and "independent" residency applicants. A caveat in evaluating this data is that all candidates who are not US allopathic medical school graduates are lumped into the "independent" category.

It is important to be realistic. For example, if you failed the USMLE Step 1 on your first attempt and then barely passed on your second attempt, it is unlikely that you can match in the most competitive specialties. If your stats are on the "borderline," you should also consider applying for your top choice specialty and another "backup" specialty, just in case.

If you are interested in working with me for the 2010/2011 application season, please retain my services soon.